Between its ups and downs Tesla still makes people talk about it. The first electric cars realized by Elon Musk left speechless. Astonishing were, instead, the first autonomous driving cars. Even though they were criticised they seem to be the future. And which will be the next step? According to the southafrican visionary it’s missed just one year before to see around in many cities the taxies without driver. But he wanted to exaggerate, infact, he claims that in two years those cars will be even without steering wheel and without pedals, by transforming themselves in robotaxies.
Autonomous driving levels
It’s arriving a new autonomous driving vehicle, it doesn’t seem a big new, because they are spreaded around for a while. However we need to distinguish them, because the passages that follow each other are many.
To understand it we have to know that there are some levels that indicate the level of indipendence of the vehicle’s artificial intelligence:
- Level 1, driver assistance system: now there are many vehicles around that are equipped with this level of technology, which includes, for example, the cruise control.
- Level 2, semi autonomous driving: those kind of vehicles can autonomous driving in some roads, like the freeway, by keeping the safety distance and by following the route. Anyway with this level of autonomy the driver’s attention can never end.
- Level 3, highly autonomous driving: as well as the previous ones the cars can drive by themselves, but the indipendence level is higher and the driver can further relax. Therefore, this level cars, some of which are already around, can speak between each other.
- Level 4, fully autonomous driving: reached this level the cars will be fully autonomous. By the way no vehicles on the marketplace has at the moment this technology, even if there are many prototypes. Their entrance on the marketplace is slowed down even by the fact there isn’t any country in the world that rules its usage.
- Level 5, autonomous driving: they are the future’s cars. The ones that we imagine exist only in the science-fiction world but that many, between which even Musk, promise that we will soon see them.
From the cars will disappear steering wheel and pedals and they will be able to speak and to interact with the other cars and with the road. Those are right the robotaxies that Tesla wants to realize.
Let’s now come back to the one that is the ultimate electric and autonomous car, precursor of the one that will be the streets and the vehicles of the future: Tesla.
The cars of the californian company currently have the highest level around, the level 3. But Elon promises that, until the end of this year, they will reach the level 4.
Everything will be possible thanks to the new hardware, Full Self Driving, which will replace the current one. The artificial intelligence will be helped by 12 ultrasounds sensors, eight cameras and a radar that makes around 2,5 billions of pixel per second, which will be processed by six billions of transistor.
By the way, like we said before, this level is banned by the road traffic rules all over the world, so, even if he will be able to keep the promise, those vehicles wouldn’t be able to run.
But Musk would like to obtain the agreement at least for the city of Los Angeles, which could become the first city with fully autonomous road traffic.
Even though the projects and the wishes, we didn’t reach yet the final project: the realization of the real robotaxies.
According to Elon, infact, those vehicles will be equipped with the level 5 and deprived of any remotes that allows to the human passenger to interact with the car.
As well as it was for the previous one those will be tested in a close place. So it’s been though to present them to the world with a fleet of Tesla level 5 that will take service like taxies in Palo Alto, in the heart of the Silicon Valley.
The date should be fixed for the end of the 2020 but hardly the world will be ready to met them in less than two years.
This post is also available in: Italiano